5 zero waste gift wrapping ideas

Danielle Alvarado

November 26, 2020

*This post may contain affiliate links

zero waste gift wrapping
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Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

With Christmas just around the corner, it’s time to think about some ways to have a more sustainable holiday. One of the best ways to make a difference is by experimenting with zero waste gift wrapping, instead of using unrecyclable, single use wrapping paper and plastic bows.

By all means, you can get creative with many different ways of zero waste gift wrapping, but here are 5 of our favourites anyone can try! We’ve included methods simpler and more crafty, so everyone will find their own among the options.

Recycled wrapping paper

zero waste gift wrapping
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If you’re not ready to give up wrapping paper but want to make a choice that’s substantially more sustainable, give recycled and recyclable wrapping paper a try. It’s not fully zero waste, because paper can’t be recycled indefinitely, but it’s a big step in a greener direction. Use a natural string or paper tape and your Christmas wrapping will be low-waste and plastic-free!


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If you have some old newspaper laying around the house, you can use it as wrapping paper for your Christmas presents! Just make sure to avoid any controversial news headlines and you’ll have yourself a rustic zero waste gift wrapping that you can finish up with natural string or paper tape. This way, you can make use of something that would otherwise be wasted and give it a new life.


zero waste gift wrapping
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This may be our absolute favourite way to wrap presents – using the Japanese Furoshiki fabric wrapping technique. All you’ll need is a square piece of fabric, which you can reuse for years to come! Use fabric scraps from sewing projects or leftovers from fabric stores to reduce your impact even further. There are plenty of tutorials on how to master this technique online, or you can just take your own twist on it and improvise!

Add a scarf

If you want to give fabric wrapping a try and the person you’re gifting is someone who wears scarfs, why not use that part of the gift as wrapping? You can give furoshiki a shot with a square scarf, try a different way to wrap presents of all sizes into scarfs of different shapes!

Reusable gift bags

You’ve seen reusable produce bags – now take that to the next level with reusable gift bags! You can reuse them for years to come or even use them for storage throughout the year. You can find plenty of different options on Etsy, with any print or pattern your heart desires. Here are a few of our favourites:

  • Reusable 8’’ x 12’’ gift bag in aqua with white bunnies by Darling Savage, $10.50+ , worldwide shipping from the US – these adorable bags with pastel bunny print is only one of the many designs this store has to offer!
Zero Waste Wrapping
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  • Large Fabric Gift Bag Sets by Finger Makes, $5.75+, shipping worldwide from the US – this is our favourite from a store that offers a variety of classic, Christmas designs.
Fabric Gift Bags
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  • Fabric gift bag set by Kari Smyth Design, from $12.00, shipping worldwide from the US – if you’re looking for a matching set of gift bags in different sizes, this is the perfect option for you.
Fabric Gift Wrap
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